Aerospace engineering is the primary field of engineering concerned with the development of aircraft and spacecraft.
It has two major and overlapping branches: aeronautical engineering and astronautical engineering. Avionics engineering is similar, but deals with the electrical side of aerospace engineering.
Aerospace engineering is the field for you if you’ve ever dreamed of designing airplanes or spacecraft. The aerospace industry is responsible not only for the ease of travel today but also for our explorations outside our planet. From NASA to Boeing, the aerospace industry is booming and ready for new innovations with support from the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). The structural design of much of our aircraft has changed over the years, and as climate change threatens our environment, organizations are gearing up to create cleaner planes and commercially available spacecraft. Knowledge of aeronautical engineering could help build your career and launch humanity’s next big thing in travel.
New technologies require new ways of thinking. The Wright Brothers couldn’t have imagined the ways in which their humble aircraft would evolve, and the field of engineering has expanded to include military operations, commercial planes, and (hopefully in the future) interstellar travel. Engineering schools are preparing students to build these machines bigger, more efficient, and safer to account for changes in our travel styles and our environment.
Launching your education path is simple with edX.org. You can take courses designed by leaders in the field, including an Introduction to Aerospace Engineering from none other than the legendary aerospace engineering department at MIT. Other choices include Delft’s series in aeronautical engineering, which covers the logistics of propulsion systems, space flight, and aircraft design. If the foundation is what you’re looking for, MIT’s introduction to Aerodynamics could help introduce principles you’ll need to prepare for an undergraduate program. Engineering students can learn the basics of engineering principles to set themselves up for success in a professional program. You can also learn the basics of Forensic Engineering from Delft to be able to examine what goes wrong and how to prevent disasters from happening again.
Aerospace systems have evolved beyond simple avionics. It holds our innate human need to explore not only our home environment but also the spaces beyond our world. If you can help build these systems and master the computer science necessary to keep them safe, you’ll be well in demand from some of our top institutions here in the United States and the world beyond. Help humanity break through the earth’s atmosphere once and for all and set out on a fulfilling career designing the aircraft of our dreams.